1976 Ford F-100 Vaquero Show Truck - Truck Trend History
The mid-’70s were a changing time for the auto industry. Increased governmental control and soaring gas prices altered the automotive landscape. Musclecars were giving way to fuel-efficient imports. On the truck side, the Van craze was in full swing. Ford even announced a factory customized E-150 van complete with porthole and graphics for 1976.
During the new model previews in 1975 the Van was on tour accompanied by a customized F-100 pickup, the subject of today's throwback.
The Ford F-100 Vaquero was an interesting conceptual exercise. Starting with a regular cab long bed 1/2-ton Custom F-100 4x4, an addition to the cab was created using a reinforced plastic and canvas enclosure placed in the front of the bed. It was physically attached to the rear of the cab. This enclosure housed a full-size bench seat. Upholstery carried a Southwestern motif. Since the seat was anchored to the bed, it sat considerably higher than the driver’s, providing a stadium feel. The sliding rear window of the cab could be opened for ease of passenger communication. Ingress and egress took place using a passenger-side mounted swimming-pool-style chrome tube ladder. The canvas covering could be opened from either side and rolled up to open the enclosure to take in more of nature's wonders. Chrome tubing surrounded the rear window of the cab to offer a grab rail for bed passengers since there was little else to hold onto. It was topped off with Cibie spotlights, graphic stripes, and white spoke wheels.
Apparently none of our magazines ran these photos, and, likewise, nothing became of the partial bed cap idea.